TechCrunch

Soma, a startup that’s hoping to be the Warby Parker of water filters, has closed a $3.7 million round of seed funding led by Baseline Ventures and Forerunner Ventures. Other backers include Lerer Ventures, Collaborative Fund, Cowboy Ventures, Vast Ventures, Mindful Investors, The 4-Hour Workweek’s Tim Ferriss, Coca-Cola’s Rohan Oza, and Sukhinder Singh Cassidy of JOYUS.

The San Francisco-based company, which raised $150,000 from over 2,000 backers through a Kickstarter campaign in 2012, closed a $1.2 million initial seed round last summer.

Targeted at do-gooder design and sustainability snobs, Soma produces glass carafes fitted with biodegradable water filters. It’s a subscription service where consumers buy the carafe and starter filter for $87, and Soma sends a replacement filter every two months for $14.99.

For every filter that sells, Soma donates money to charity: water, which funds clean water projects around the world. This one-to-one model is well…

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NewsFeed

The national Boy Scouts Jamboree — a ten-day camp-out starting this week — got noticeably more exclusive this year. As 30,000 youths descended upon West Virginia’s rugged terrain for the Jamboree on Monday, their peers with a body mass index (BMI) higher than 39 were barred from attending. Even those with a BMI of 32 or higher were required to submit health information and be individually cleared for participation.

This year’s Jamboree, which takes place in the New River Gorge region of West Virginia, is the most physically demanding since the inaugural Jamboree in 1937, which took place in Washington, D.C. The quadrennial pow-wow’s activities range from mountain biking and rock climbing to scuba diving and a water obstacle course — all strenuous exercises that require physical fitness, Dan McCarthy, director of the BSA’s Summit Group, told the Associated Press. Because there are no vehicles on site, the participants…

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The Chronicles© - No Equal Since 2008 | www.stickydiljoe.com

In the increasingly saturated Southern California car show scene, timing is everything. When and where you have your event can quickly determine whether or not people will show up. A couple of years ago, things were very different; quality of cars and the quality of production were key factors in a show’s success. Today…not so much. To be fair, the top tier events in our country are successful because of their ability to produce a great product but these days, shows and meets are so commonplace and everyone is trying to throw a car show because they want a piece of the proverbial pie. Everyone is a “hustler” now and sees that there is money to be made in the industry so they attempt to put an event together on their own. Social media makes up for a lot of the work that people used to do in an attempt…

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NewsFeed

Natural beauty is going to new heights – or depths, depending on your perspective – with a live snail facial. Snail slime has been a coveted, if surprising, ingredient in beauty products for years, prized for its supposed anti-aging and skin-rejuvenating properties. Now, a Tokyo spa is giving its patrons the unique opportunity to let snails crawl across their face and apply the slimy elixir themselves.

The treatment, an add-on to a so-called “celeb escargot” facial, is only available at the Ci:z.Labo salon in Tokyo for now. During the escargot facial, the client’s face is washed before the mollusks are gently placed on the cheeks and forehead and left to their slimy devices for five minutes. The slithering around is followed by face masks and other beauty treatments.

(MORE: WATCH: Dustin Hoffman on What Tootsie Taught Him About Beauty)

According to the Telegraph, the secret to…

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The Misfortune Of Knowing

Scales of Purchase created by AMB at The Misfortune of Knowing BlogIn an effort to discourage letters from young fans, the curmudgeonly children’s book author E.B. White wrote in 1961:

When I was a child, I liked books, but an author to me was a mythical being. I never dreamed of getting in touch with one, and no teacher ever suggested that I do so. The book was the thing, not the man behind the book. (emphasis added).

 It’s much easier for 21st Century readers to know the men or women “behind the book[s]” than it was for White’s mid-20th Century fans. Through social media, we can interact more easily with our favorite authors and consume news about their lives in addition to consuming their books. Whether rightly or wrongly, factors external to the book like authors’ reputations — their perceived personality and even their politics — often outweigh factors intrinsic to the book when we choose what books to…

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U.S.

Is President Obama concerned by the runaway spending that has taken place under his watch? Sometimes he pays lip service to the notion. For example, here’s the President in the 2010 National Security Strategy of the United States:

Our strategy starts by recognizing that our strength and influence abroad begins with steps we take at home. We must grow our economy and reduce our deficit.

Back then the President recognized that deficit reduction is critically linked to military preparedness and national security. But you wouldn’t it know now by his Administration’s actions.

From 2009 until today, the President has lurched from crisis to crisis, with little regard for spending control. He, with congressional assent, has enlarged the deficit and the debt at every step.

To be fair, the President had plenty of company in mismanaging our fiscal affairs. Republicans in the House of Representatives talk a good game on spending…

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